Lancashire Parliamentarians are urging Lancashire County Council to fully support the County’s City of Culture bid.
At a meeting of Lancashire All Party Parliamentary Group, on Tuesday 13th July, Lancashire’s MPs and members of the House of Lords discussed suggestions that Lancashire County Council may step back from submitting a county wide City of Culture bid.
David Morris MP, chair of the APPG, said: “We believe the bid offers the chance to win substantial economic returns for the county and further develop our cultural offer. For what is a relatively small investment, we believe returns can be as high as £300 million. Even if we are unsuccessful, the whole process will have helped build unity across the county and further strengthen our cultural ties.”
He continued: “I commissioned the House of Commons Library to produce a Research Note on this issue and it clearly shows that no final decision has been made by Lancashire County Council and that previously successful localities have gained significantly from becoming a City of Culture. We realise there has been some doubts about the value of the bidding process, and I can understand that, but on balance, we are of the view that Lancashire is better off trying to win this important initiative than not.”
Lancashire All Party Parliamentary Group brings local Parliamentarians together regularly to specifically ‘help promote the region and maximise investment for the benefit of all the communities of Lancashire.’ Rachel McQueen, the Chief Executive of Marketing Lancashire, presented on the City of Culture at Tuesday’s meeting and Parliamentarians were also given the findings of the research by the House of Common’s Library.
David finally stated: “Lancashire County Council are right to watch every penny they spend, that is good governance, but the bid is already well underway, and they have already committed £620,000 to the initiative so in many ways, it’s too late to pull back. We also think our County is well placed to have a successful bid, and this could be exactly the sort of boost our communities need after the pandemic. It’s a really great chance to bring everyone together and celebrate what’s best about our County.”